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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Review of the Day: Up Verses Down by Calef Brown

By my thinking you can never have enough nonsense taking up residence in a human brain. Calef Brown’s latest just proves it.

Review of the Day: Climbing Shadows by Shannon Bramer, ill. Cindy Derby

Do you remember that scene in Orlando by Virginia Woolf where a bunch of witty people are in a room saying witty things and then Alexander Pope walks in and says three things so devastatingly witty that he just destroys everything? That’s what happens when Climbing Shadows gets paired alongside other collections of poetry. Smart. Honestly heartfelt. Utterly beautiful to look at. See the bar? Yeah. It just got raised.

Poetry Month Ain’t Over Till I Sez It’s Over: The Shockingly Good Verse of 2019

Gather round me, ye children. I know we’re in May, but poetry can shine every day of the year if it wants to. This is all the new good stuff. You know you wanna know what’s worthy.

Review of the Day: Sweet Dreamers by Isabelle Simler

Simler has previously wowed American audience with such books as Plume and the magnificent The Blue Hour. Now, thanks in part to the elegant translation by Sarah Ardizzone, she has crafted a new kind of bedtime book. One rooted in poetry, dreams, seasons, fuzzy noses, lilting words, and a type of scratch art never before made possible.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Poetry Books

Poems used to be the sole property of April a.k.a. Poetry Month. Now that’s changing. Publishers are rapidly putting more faith into the poetry books they produce. So let’s take a look at what we saw this year, and the wide range of topics that were touched.

Review of the Day: Jabberwalking by Juan Felipe Herrera

Jabberwalking By Juan Felipe Herrera Candlewick Press $22.99 ISBN: 9781536201406 Ages 10 and up On shelves now Not too long ago I taught a six-week summer creative writing course for teens. Now I’ve never taught creative writing before. Truth be told, I had no idea where to start. So, like any good librarian, I hit […]

Review of the Day: Seeing Into Tomorrow by Richard Wright and Nina Crews

Seeing Into Tomorrow Haiku by Richard Wright Biography and illustrations by Nina Crews Millbrook Press (a division of Lerner) $19.99 ISBN: 978-1-5124-1865-1 Ages 6-10 On shelves now I hate that phrase, “A picture’s worth a thousand words”. It’s trite. Simplistic. And horrendously true. Pictures have power. Take the story that’s been handed to us about […]

Review of the Day: Can I Touch Your Hair? by Irene Latham & Charles Waters

Can I Touch Your Hair? Poems of Race, Mistakes and Friendship By Irene Latham & Charles Waters Illustrated by Sean Qualls & Selina Alko Carolrhoda Books (a division of Lerner) $17.99 ISBN: 978-1-5124-0442-5 Ages 6 and up On shelves now For a long time, maybe as long as children’s books have been published in America, […]

31 Days, 31 Lists: Day Seventeen – 2017 Poetry Books for Kids

P-p-p-poetry! Motto: It’s not just for April anymore. In a given year I tend to run out of poetry books for kids to review. I’ll find five or six spectacular ones, and then a handful of hundrum okay-but-not-great titles to fill in the gaps. 2017 changed the rules on me. Suddenly I found myself with […]

New Kinds of Poetry: Title Poems (2017 Edition)

It’s Poetry Month, my dulcet darlings!  That can mean only one thing.  Time to come up with a new way of writing poetry. Today, the challenge is simple.  Write original poetry, that makes sense, entirely out of the titles of books published in 2017.  For my purposes today I think I’ll work entirely in the […]

Review of the Day: A New School Year – Stories in Six Voices by Sally Derby, ill. Mika Song

A New School Year: Stories in Six Voices By Sally Derby Illustrated by Mika Song Charlesbridge $16.99 ISBN: 978-1580897303 Ages 5-12 On shelves June 27th Sometimes I think that easy readers are the hardest books for kids to write. Those are the beginner books where the word count is limited and you have to somehow […]

31 Days, 31 Lists: Day 21 – 2016 Poetry Books for Kids

Fun Fact: The American Library Association does not currently give an award specifically to great works of children’s book poetry.  Is not that strange?  When I first discovered this to be true, I was perplexed.  I’ve always been a bit of a rube when it comes to the poetic form.  Placing stresses on syllables and […]

Review of the Day: Are You an Echo? by David Jacobson

Are You an Echo? The Lost Poetry of Misuzu Kaneko Narrative and Translation by David Jacobson, Sally Ito, and Michiko Tsuboi Illustrated by Toshikado Hajiri Chin Music Press $19.50 ISBN: 9781634059626 Ages 5 and up On shelves now Recently I was at a conference celebrating the creators of different kinds of children’s books. During one […]

Review of the Day: Freedom Over Me by Ashley Bryan

Freedom Over Me: Eleven slaves, their lives and dreams brought to life By Ashley Bryan Atheneum (an imprint of Simon & Schuster) $17.99 ISBN: 978-1481456906 Ages 9 and up On shelves September 13th Who gives voice to the voiceless? What are your credentials when you do so? When I was a teen I used to […]

Review of the Day: When Green Becomes Tomatoes by Julie Fogliano

When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons By Julie Fogliano Illustrated by Julie Morstad A Neal Porter Book / Roaring Brook Press (Macmillan) $18.99 ISBN: 9781596438521 Ages 6 and up On shelves now. I don’t think I can adequately stress to you the degree to which I did not want to review this book. […]